Pregnancy for HIV-Positive Women Safer in Early Stages of Virus, Study Says
September 19, 2007
HIV-positive women who want to become pregnant should be informed that pregnancy is safer during the early clinical stages of the virus, when CD4+ T cell counts are higher, according to a study published recently in Tropical Medicine & International Health, Uganda's Monitor reports.
According to the study, HIV-positive women who want to become pregnant should be warned about the potential negative effect a pregnancy could have on their immune system's ability to fight HIV and should be offered contraception. Pregnant women living with HIV who are eligible for antiretroviral therapy "should be offered such treatment as a priority group since they are at high risk for fast progression" of HIV and because the antiretrovirals will help prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission, the study said. The study also found that since the introduction of a program aimed at preventing mother-to-child transmission, less than 5% of HIV-positive mothers in southwest Uganda do not breast-feed (Kirunda, Monitor, 9/17).
An abstract of the study is available online.
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.